Sunday, September 11, 2022

Not so good Reason and not so good Theology on Exsurge Domine and Dignitatis Humanae

Note : he does not (as I recall) mention Dignitatus Humanae, but it is implied, since a strong stance for Exsurge Domine and condemnation of prop 33 in it are mainstay of those who say Vatican II is heretical.

Is Burning Heretics Dogma? A Look at Pope Leo X's Exsurge Domine
10 or 11.IX.2022 | Reason & Theology

7:13 Correction!

"Exsurge Domine (Latin for 'Arise, O Lord') is a papal bull promulgated on 15 June 1520 by Pope Leo X. It was written in response to the teachings of Martin Luther which opposed the views of the Church. It censured forty-one propositions extracted from Luther's Ninety-five Theses and subsequent writings, and threatened him with excommunication unless he recanted within a sixty-day period commencing upon the publication of the bull in Saxony and its neighboring regions. Luther refused to recant and responded instead by composing polemical tracts lashing out at the papacy and by publicly burning a copy of the bull on 10 December 1520. As a result, Luther was excommunicated in 1521."

So, Exsurge Domine did not include the excommunication, it included the last warning before one.

Glad to have comment number 53. A rosary number.

13:02 "only denying a primary object of infallibility would be heretical"

Would you argue this one out?

And if the class of the forbidden statement is "erroneous" rather than "formally heretical" - does that make it allowed?

15:40 I checked the text.

With the advice and consent of these our venerable brothers, with mature deliberation on each and every one of the above theses, and by the authority of almighty God, the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and our own authority, we condemn, reprobate, and reject completely each of these theses or errors as either heretical, scandalous, false, offensive to pious ears or seductive of simple minds, and against Catholic truth. By listing them, we decree and declare that all the faithful of both sexes must regard them as condemned, reprobated, and rejected . . . We restrain all in the virtue of holy obedience and under the penalty of an automatic major excommunication....

The qualifications that involve "either heretical" and therefore include alternatives to heretical stretches up to the "or seductive of simple minds" - but all of this list is coordinated by an "and" - namely "and against Catholic truth."

so, reformulating it would be a list stretching from "either heretical and against Catholic truth" to "or seductive of simple minds and against Catholic truth" - in other words EACH is against Catholic truth, not just the heretical ones.

By listing them, we decree and declare that all the faithful of both sexes must regard them as condemned, reprobated, and rejected . . . We restrain all in the virtue of holy obedience and under the penalty of an automatic major excommunication....

As far as I know, never rescinded.

15:43 You don't consider that "major excommunication" is synonymous with "anathema"?

16:09 "it's one of those things"

No, it is always two of those things : the second one in each couple being "and against Catholic truth."

So, whatever thesis 33 is otherwise, it is "against Catholic truth"

18:23 EACH is a combination involving "and against Catholic truth"

Now, "heretical" - "false" - "offensive to pious ears" is a falling degrees scale of things that are against Catholic truth, but all of them are against Catholic truth.

The maybe least serious could be "offensive to pious ears" insofar as it could be construed to mean "what you say is technically correct, but you make it sound as if ..." - but the problem with this interpretation is, I have never seen it used this way.

I have seen it used as "it's so bad, if you have any piety you pick it out as a false note" ...

The least one could state is "it is against Catholic truth as it stands" ... = you'd have to reformulate before it is anywhere near correct.

In the 16th C. one was definitely centuries before Antichrist, because one was definitely centuries before now, whether Antichrist is already here or not.

(Note, Leo X never considered it heretical, only forbidden, to set dates - his wording is very different, it involves "they have" or "they had" no authorisation, without specifying what kind of authorisation he was thinking of).

And what has Antichrist got to do with it? Well, the reason St. Thomas considers burning heretics is a perfectly good thing to do is, he does not trust heretics to not persecute Catholics if they get the power. He considers the power of Antichrist will in some way be due to heretics. Orthodoxy was a block against Antichrist coming. By burning heretics while it was doing some good to keep countries Orthodox, and I don't mean mini-states that could be invaded overnight if they brought the custom back, one was keeping the advent of Antichrist away for some time.

Orosius says the Roman Emperor is the one who is "holding back" (and needs to be removed before Antichrist can come) - but some people consider it's the Holy Spirit who is "the one holding back" - and what is certain is, it is in at least some way a work of the Spirit to do so, whether the Roman Emperor (taken away both in Vienna and in St. Petersburg after WW-I) was His chosen means or not.

So, if you would want to calm fears about Catholic power meaning "persecution looming over Evangelicals" the best I could offer them is, it may be against the will of the Holy Spirit by now, because the scene is already set for Antichrist, and burning heretics is not turning back that tide.

B U T this position obviously involves something like date-setting ... not to the best liking of Antipope Emeritus Ratzinger, I discussed it back when accepting him as a real cardinal of a real (though dubiously beneficient) Pope, with one still considering him as having been Pope : she considered one could never identify the Antichrist, because 1) that would be date-setting; 2) it would impede one from the duty of praying for him.

And a ban on identifying the Antichrist in its turn involves an extra ban on date setting. Obviously, such a ban doesn't make much sense if there is any meaning to Apocalypse 13:18. Unless by "identifying" you mean positively narrowing it down to exactly one. Today there are four, if ASCII is allowed in gematria. And I mean major players : Putin, Ratzinger, Bergoglio, Biden.

Obviously, even if it were against the will of the Holy Spirit to burn heretics in the XXIst C., it would not mean it was so for the XVInth.

19:08 My claim is, that the proposition was at least against Catholic truth as it stood. (As the proposition stood)

19:56 And obviously, at the end of the Old Testament, last few years before the Crucifixion, there was a generation of Pharisees who deserved stoning for their behaviour to more elderly Pharisees, these being their fathers.

The only ones who were collectively interested in condemning the culprits were in the individual cares of such culprits, so the law of stoning very practically could not be applied.

A bit later it was misapplied to Christians, as we know from Acts.

20:14 It certainly means that God allows for the burning of heretics in the New Covenant.

Otherwise it would have said "stoning" and not "burning" ... as it says "burning" it refers to the death penalty on heretics in the New Covenant era.

One could just maintain that we are in a time corresponding in the New Covenant to that last generation before Crucifixion in the Old one ... - a moral deadlock in which the stoning penalty could not - and in which perhaps today the burning penalty cannot - be applied. Coupled with a socio-military deadlock on it : the Jews in Jesus' time lived under a Roman occupation that did not allow stoning, the Catholics today in most countries live under a secularist one, which would not allow for burning, and even the countries that are not secularist could not do it without risking to get invaded very quickly. Monaco and Andorra are not a match for France. Poland without NATO is not a match for Russia : or stated otherwise, Poland is not a match for Russia + NATO.

20:27 Let me remind you that neither death penalty nor death penalty for heretics were explicitly revoked in the beginning of the New Testament.

These are penalties of the secular power. And it definitely was the will of the Holy Spirit to make the secular power Catholic : Matthew 28:16-20 evokes all nations - not individuals from all nations, forming clubs within them, as a JW mistranslation implies, but the nations in their collective totality or quasitotality. And that includes their secular power. Constantine, Clovis and Olof Skötkonung getting baptised before their courts and subjects and endorsing baptism (or even making it a condition for continued service) was definitely in obedience to Christ's command.

The Church herself "abhorret a sanguine" and qua Church neither burns a heretic nor electrocutes a Ted Bundy. A bishop (including Pope) who is also secular prince could do both, but he would do that as secular prince.

When it comes to the death penalty of a heretic, the Church is acting as coroner, making a judgement proving the guilt, the secular power is following this up by acting as the condemning jury.

However, apart from armed rebellion, or some things getting close to it perhaps too, the heresy that is against the real faith is the only kind of dissent that the secular power could justly apply the death penalty to. The Church therefore acted as adviser to legislators and administrations and in a tight spot (with Albigensians looking like Antichrist just behind the corner) actually pushing them to do their duty.

20:43 Not long before, some witches had been burned for unrepented heresy in some witchcult of Germany.

I think the pious ears around Luther's time were more involved with the question whether that was just than with the OT example.

21:46 You are forgetting that all and sundry of the propositions fall under the general censor "against Catholic truth"

23:56 Do you require the Church to define what colours "green" and "purple" and "white" and "scarlet" are?

Perhaps certain people who seem to not be wearing black but purple or scarlet or both on Good Friday are in reality wearing black because the Church hasn't defined that "purple" means the colour that computers do by #A020F0 or scarlet one they do by #ff2400. The Church hasn't defined that black is the one they do by #000000.

25:06 Against Dulles (the rather well named in this context) : proposition 33 very certainly is also condemned as "against Catholic truth"

So, if "That heretics be burned is against the will of the Spirit" is against Catholic truth, it is at least a Catholic truth that the Holy Spirit for some situations (like averting the Albigensian threat) approved the burning of some heretics, like the 40-ish that were handed over to the secular arm by Bernard Guy (who was judging about 600 + persons in 900 + court decisions) - or Tyndale, for giving a false exegesis of Romans 3.

26:42 Even if the minor censor on prop. 33 was only true in 16th C and no longer, this is still contradicing Dignitatis Humanae, since a right of man is per definition a right in every age, at least every age of the New Testament : like the right of a wife not to share the hubby with some other wives. Or not to get a divorce bill. This right was wavered for a time in the OT, but is no longer so.

So, if Dign. Hum. is true, it involves a truth that even in the 16th C. condemned the even minor censor on prop. 33 - but if the minor censor on prop. 33 was true at least then, then Dign. Hum. is not true now.

To be fair to some EO rite priests who were nominally defending Dign Hum, they were not defending its actual content.

The document says that religious freedom is a right, inherent in man and therefore also even in a man of a false religion, not that it should pragmatically be treated as a rite right now.

The latter is in no conflict with even a major censor on prop. 33. But the former is in contradiction with even a minor and now past censor on it.

26:57 Two problems : 1) you are arguing as if "offensive to pious ears" could be the sole censor of any proposition, while it is on the contrary clear each has a co-censor in "and contrary to Catholic truth" - 2) you are also arguing as if ears that are pious could be objectively offended by something that was true back then, even if it was only stated as such later on.

Because "offensive to pious ears" does not just mean that pious ears subjectively take offense, precisely as "scandalous" doesn't mean that a Pharisee takes scandal on it.

Both of these minor censors do in fact involve objective aptness to scandalise or offend.

Your position (if you take it Dign Hum expresses, as it purports to do, timeless truth) involves : "proposition so and so can be both objectively true and not allowed to be expressed because pious ears have an objective right to be offended by it" - which is putting a kind of fissure into objectivity as a concept.

27:34 Just a more personal sidenote : if you are saying that some of the 41 propositions were not condemned with any censor involving truth propositions (false, as per the addition "and against Catholic truth"), is there any other proposition you would like to say is not "true" any longer?

41. Ecclesiastical prelates and secular princes would not act badly if they destroyed all of the money bags of beggary.

I mean, are you defending "laws" that are forbidding begging?

28:38 It is offensive to pious ears to say "Saint Mary Magdalene was a Prostitute" - but it is not so to say "Saint Mary Magdalene had been a Prostitute before she became a saint."

It is also not offensive to pious ears - real ones not Protestant fakes - to say "Saint Mary Magdalene is patron saint of Prostitutes" - and that these can licitly pray for her intercession on things like necessary good fortune (in their sinful business), escaping from violence or fraud or getting and taking a chance of getting out of the job comfortably, rather than forced by social workers and shrinks.

By the way, while "Saint Mary Magdalene had been a Prostitute before she became a saint," is not offensive to pious ears, it is not a defined truth either, since Pope St. Gregory the Great certainly does identify as one : "the sinful woman" "Mary Magdalene" and "Mary the Sister of Lazarus" but some Christians do not do that, but distinguish two or three female persons between these three names. What we do know about St. Mary Magdalene was that she had been possessed by seven unclean spirits, whom Christ drove out.

I guess Prostitutes could also invoke her against demons and demonic activities ...

29:10 A thing that is "offensive to pious ears" may be technically true in what it says, but it is untrue in what it leaves to the imagination.

This of course presuming that "offensive to pious ears" can be used for "what you say is technically correct, but you make it sound as if ..." - and as I have said, I haven't seen it used so.

What my analysis of the examples I have seen makes it is rather "it's so bad, if you have any piety you pick it out as a false note"

29:42 When it comes to Prostitute it is obvious that there is a difference between Prostitute and ex-Prostitute, just as there is between teacher and ex-teacher. Because there is a question of trade.

Already that would make an adress to St. Mary Magdalene as "Prostitute" untrue. But even in the case of what is just a sin, namely the denial, or denials, three of them, it is bad theology and therefore untrue to consider someone as a perpetrator of a sin he is already forgiven of.

"Have you lied?" "What do you call someone who lies" ... no, if one has not lied in any serious way (socially or in moral theology) one is normally not adressed as a liar, and also, if one has repented of a lie and corrected it (as his non-denial on Vaticanus collis certainly did) it one is also not a liar.

30:16 Again, all of the 41 propositions have the major censor "and against Catholic truth" ... and what about this very major global censor that also applies to each and all of the theses? Here:

We have found that these errors or theses are not Catholic, as mentioned above, and are not to be taught, as such; but rather are against the doctrine and tradition of the Catholic Church, and against the true interpretation of the sacred Scriptures received from the Church. Now Augustine maintained that her authority had to be accepted so completely that he stated he would not have believed the Gospel unless the authority of the Catholic Church had vouched for it. For, according to these errors, or any one or several of them, it clearly follows that the Church which is guided by the Holy Spirit is in error and has always erred.

By the way the condemned theses must still be forbidden, since the Pope forbade them to be held by any faithful of either sex.

ac pro damnatis, reprobatis, et rejectis ab omnibus utriusque sexûs Christi fidelibus haberi debere, harum serie decernimus et declaramus.

A proposition that might have been "piis auribus offensiva" then, but not now could not have fallen under that condemnation, even if the word "anathema" doesn't happen to be there.

Omnibus means all (at least from then on) and not just all at that time.

By now it is obvious that "Reason and Theology" is going to continue to state that each sentence in Exsurge is only condemned with one censor, we don't know which one and we don't know whether it involves a truth claim. And it should be sufficiently clear to any reader of this that all the "alternative" censors are coordinated with one that certainly does involve a truth claim, "against Catholic truth" ... I break off at halftime ... 31:09 rather than 1:00:19. Oh, here is one I had not positively answered, this is my answer to it:

31:39 It is sufficient for overturning Dign. Hum. to say that the Holy Spirit is not against all burning of heretics that took place.

You are overstating what your opponent needs to prove.

And to pretend that the Holy Spirit is against the burning of heretics (generally, not just right near the second coming), is to make the Fourth Lateran Council out as blaspheming the Holy Ghost. Meaning it were inciting to in objective fact disobey Him. Meaning it were not a true Council.

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